Dr. Hanza Diman

Refugee, Migration and Mobility Studies

Institute of Cultural Studies


Tel.: +49 89 6004-3043


Hanza Diman is a research assistant with a teaching assignment at the Chair of Refugee, Migration and Mobility Studies at the University of the Bundeswehr Munich. His current postdoctoral research analyses compact cassettes as an object of study in Benin-Ivorian migration dynamics (1970-2000).

He studied German language and literature at the University of Abomey-Calavi (Benin). He also holds a Master's degree in African Cultures and Societies from the University of Bayreuth (focusing on African History) and a scholarship from the Heinrich Böll Foundation and the German Academic Exchange Service.

Mr. Diman completed his doctorate in 2021 at the Faculty of Cultural Studies of the University of Bayreuth (Chairs of African History and Culture and Technology in Africa) and the Bayreuth International Graduate School of African Studies on the history of firewood and charcoal as cooking energy in Lomé (Togo) between 1907 and 2017 funded by Friedrich Naumann Foundation and BIGSAS. The thesis was awarded summa cum laude.

During his doctorate, he also participated in the certified distance learning programme "Comprendre le Monde" in International Relations at the Institut de Relations Internationales et Stratégiques (IRIS, France).

He has carried out empirical field research in Togo, Berlin and Aix-en-Provence and is a reviewer for the Revue d'étude des migrations africaines.

For his commitment to education policy, including as a founding member of Model African Union e.V. and honorary coordinator of Afrika@school, he was awarded the Federal Cross of Merit by Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier in 2022 and the DAAD Prize in 2020.

Hanza Diman coordinated the third round of the "spots" film project of the German Film Academy in Bayreuth.


Fields of research

Political History of Africa

History and present of intra-West African migration

Communication history of Africa

Border issues in West Africa from a historical and contemporary perspective

History of diplomacy

History of energy

Theories and methods in history

Human-environment relations

Digital History

Oral history

Africa in global geopolitics and international relations


Favoured methodological approaches

Critical social empirical research, written and oral historical research approaches (in the age of digitalisation), and interdisciplinarity


Thematic research areas

Migration movements within West Africa

Military coups in the past and present of Africa

Domestic wood energy in West Africa (historical and contemporary)

Western Sahara conflict and the role of African national and supranational institutions.

Regionalism and transnationalism in the ECOWAS region

Archive work in the digital age

Oral history in theory and practice

Germany's development and security policy, especially in West Africa

Regional research spaces

West Africa (especially Benin, Togo, Côte d'Ivoire)



In Journals:

Les témoins en parlent. Récits empiriques des impacts des Coups D’État de 1963 et 1967 au Togo In : Collection Recherches & Regards D’Afrique VOL 2 N° 0 5 / OCTOBRE 2023 (peer-reviewed)

‘Enjeu du conflit au Sahara occidental : rôles et responsabilités de l’Union Africaine et de la Communauté des Économique des États de l’Afrique de l’Ouest pour un dénouement durable’ in: Revue Géostratégiques N°60, März 2023 (peer-reviewed)

‘Fieldwork Experiences and Practices in Africa’Bayreuth: Institute of African Studies, University of Bayreuth , 2021 . - VIII, 80 PP. - (University of Bayreuth African Studies Working Papers ; 27 ) (BIGSASworks; 10)

‘Using Oral History to Research Fuelwood Energy in Togo: Some Experiences from the Field’, University of Bayreuth African Studies Working
Papers 27, BIGSASworks! 10. Bayreuth: Institute of African Studies. 5-14.

Book chapters:

Co-published with Dr Katrin Pfadenhauer. (2018) ‘Togo‘ in: Hardy, Stéphane/ Herling, Sandra/ Patzelt, Carolin [eds]: Weltsprache Französisch. Variation, Sociolinguistics and Geographical Distribution of French. Handbuch für das Studium der Frankoromanistik. Stuttgart

Co-published with Dr Katrin Pfadenhauer. (2018) ‘Benin‘ in: Hardy, Stéphane/ Herling, Sandra/ Patzelt, Carolin [eds]: Weltsprache Französisch. Variation, Sociolinguistics and Geographical Distribution of French. Handbuch für das Studium der Frankoromanistik. Stuttgart


‘Wood for the kitchen : Towards a history of the supply and use of fuelwood in an urban setting of West Africa; The case of Lome (from 1907 to 2017)’. Bayreuth , 2021 . - 218 S. ( Dissertation, 2021 , University of Bayreuth, Bayreuth International Graduate School of African Studies - BIGSAS)

Public outreach:

Diman, Hanza und Minougou, Theophane. (2023) ‘Place à la realpolitik dans les positions du Bénin et du Burkina Faso sur la crise au Niger’ In : quotidien Fraternité N°5969 von 28. September 2023 (Newslletter)

‘Coup d’État au Niger: Entre triomphe de la théorie des Dominos, implications régionales et géopolitiques’ In : quotidien Fraternité N°5520 von 31. Juli 2023 (Newsletter)

‘The new government's Africa policy in Germany: from change to continuity’ Farafina Reflexions, January 2022,


Conferences with Paper Presentations ( 2023-2024)

 Topic : “Pre-colonial, colonial, and post-independence Africa and coups d'état: What Common Grounds?” @ ASAUK Conference im August 2024, London.

 Topic : « Régionalisme et identité transnationale en Afrique de l’Ouest questionnés par le « bas » » @ « Conférence thématique MIASA 2024 La gouvernance régionale en tant qu'expérience : Nouvelles perspectives sur la politique et la durabilité, Université Omar Bongo, Libreville, Gabon » 4-6. July 2024.

Topic: “The Western Sahara conflict, African supranational institutions and international law” @ “Western Sahara: Exploring New Perspectives from International Law and International Relations" Conference in  University of Deusto, Donostia-San Sebastian Campus” 9-10. May 2024

Topic: « L'usage des cassettes dans la migration béninoise en Côte-d'Ivoire » , @  « Sound, text and context : artistic and interdisciplinary approaches of aurality » Conference by Centre Marc Bloch, Berlin (hybrid), 15-16 February 2024

Topic : « Enjeux et défis de méthodologie de la recherche » as guest lecturer by  Laboratoire de Recherches et d’Actions Diplomatiques (LaRAD), 11 Nov. 2023 (Online)


Memberships and networks

Academic networks

-Member of the Association of German Historians (VHD)
-Appointed member of the NFDI4Memory Special Committee on Research Ethics (SCRE)
-Member of the Society for Social and Cultural Anthropology (DGSKA)

-Member of the Oral History Society (Great Britain)

Civil society networks

-Africa (founding member and chairman)
-Model African Union e.V. (founding member)

-Farafina Institute


Language skills

-German (C2+)

-French (native speaker level)

-English (C1+)

-Spanish (Basics)

-Mina / Ewe (native speaker level)

-Fon / Gun (native speaker level)

-Hausa (native speaker level)